1. Summary
  2. Index Futures for Hedging
  3. Speculation on Index Futures
  4. Index Futures vs. Commodities Futures Contracts
  5. Conclusion


An index derivative states the holder agrees to buy who index at a specific value on a given future date. Index futures generally settle quarterly in March, June, September, and December. There are sometimes many annual contracts yet.

Equity index futures are cash-settled. this implies that there is no delivery of the underlying quality at the top of the contract. If the worth of the index is beyond the agreed-upon contract price at the ending date, the customer makes a profit whereas the vendor (who is understood because the future writer) suffers a loss. In the opposite situation, the customer suffers a loss whereas the vendor makes a profit.

For example, if the Dow closes at 16,000 at the top of a Gregorian calendar month, the holder with a Gregorian calendar month derivative one year earlier at fifteen,760 finishes up reaping a profit.

Profits are determined by the distinction between the entry and exit costs of the contract. like any speculative trade, there are risks the market may move against the position. As mentioned earlier, the commerce account should meet margin necessities and will receive a demand to hide any risk of more losses. The dealer should perceive that a lot of factors will drive market index costs, together with political economy conditions like economic processes and company earnings.

Index Futures for Hedging

Portfolio managers usually purchase equity index futures as a hedge against potential losses. If the manager has positions during a sizable amount of stocks, index futures will facilitate hedging the danger of declining stock costs by commercialism equity index futures.

Since several stocks tend to maneuver within the same general direction, the portfolio manager may sell or short index derivatives just in case stock costs decline. In the event of a market downswing, the stocks in the portfolio would fall in price, however, the sold-out index futures contracts would gain in price, countervailing the losses from the stocks.

The fund manager may hedge all of the drawback risks of the portfolio, or solely partly offset it. The drawback of hedging is that this reduces profits if the hedge is not needed. therefore, if the capitalist from the previous section with a Gregorian calendar month derivative shorts index future and also the market rises, the index futures decline in price. The losses from the hedge would offset gains within the portfolio because the stock exchange rises.

Speculation on Index Futures

Speculation is a sophisticated commerce strategy that’s not fitted to several investors. However, old traders tend to use index futures to invest in the direction of the index. rather than shopping for individual stocks or assets, a dealer will wager the direction of a bunch of assets by getting commercialism index futures.

For example, to copy the S&P five hundred Index, investors would want to shop for all five hundred stocks within the index. Instead, index futures are often accustomed to wagering the direction of all five hundred stocks, with one contract making an identical result of owning all five hundred stocks within the S&P five hundred.

Index Futures vs. Commodities Futures Contracts

By their nature, stock market index futures operate otherwise than futures contracts. These contracts permit traders to shop for or sell a given quantity of goods at the agreed-upon value on a date within the future. Contracts are ordinarily changed for tangible merchandise like cotton, soybeans, sugar, crude oil, gold, and whatever.

Investors typically trade goods futures as how to hedge or speculate on the value of the underlying goods. in contrast to cash-settled index futures, long position holders of commodities futures contracts can have to be compelled to take physical delivery if the position has not been closed out before ending.

Businesses oftentimes use goods futures to lock in costs for the raw materials they have for production.


Index futures are derivatives that provide you with the correct and also obligation to shop for or sell stock exchange indexes at a given date within the future at an agreed-upon value. you will trade futures for indexes just like the S&P five hundred, Dow Jones, National Association of Securities Dealers Automated Quotations a hundred yet as foreign market indexes, like the FTSE a hundred or the droop Seng. To trade index futures, you will need to open who account with a securities firm. Once your account is open, opt for the index you wish to trade and judge whether or not you wish to travel long (you believe the value can increase) or short (you believe the value can decrease). make sure you retain an eye fixed on your contract because it nears the expiration date.